What are USCG and SOLAS regulations for navigation lighting?

Proper lighting of your watercraft and understanding night navigation rules are both critically important for safe navigation in the dark, and regulations vary according the vessel size and means of propulsion, whether under power, sail or oars.

The classification "vessels under oars" includes paddled watercraft.

We've compiled links to federal and state regulatory agencies.

International conventions for Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) apply to transit in international waters.

Misinformation is widespread, notably with respect to lawfully required lighting of a kayak or canoe; maneuvering properly at night; steps to preserve your night vision and that of other paddlers and boaters; and other established practices when navigating at night.

We′ve put together a few sound Recommendations for outfitting a kayak, SOT, SUP or canoe.

The recommendations page linked above includes a Note Regarding USCG Certification and USCG Approval, and a Caution regarding Interpretations of USCG Navigation Rules.

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